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Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott, Bart.
Walter Scott to J. B. S. Morritt of Rokeby, 10 December 1812

Vol I Preface
Vol. I Contents.
Chapter I
Chapter II 1771-78
Chapter III 1778-83
Chapter IV 1783-86
Chapter V 1786-90
Chapter VI 1790-92
Chapter VII 1792-96
Chapter VIII 1796-97
Chapter IX 1798-99
Chapter X 1800-02
Chapter XI 1802-03
Chapter XII 1803-04
Vol. II Contents.
Chapter I 1804-05
Chapter II 1805
Chapter III 1806
Chapter IV 1806-08
Chapter V 1808
Chapter VI 1808-09
Chapter VII 1809-10
Chapter VIII 1810
Chapter IX 1810
Chapter X 1810-11
Chapter XI 1811
Chapter XII 1811-12
Vol. III Contents.
Chapter I 1812-13
Chapter II 1813
Chapter III 1814
Chapter IV 1814
Chapter V 1814
Chapter VI 1814
Chapter VII 1814
Chapter VIII 1814
Chapter IX 1814
Chapter X 1814-15
Chapter XI 1815
Chapter XII 1815
Vol III Appendix
Vol. IV Contents.
Chapter I 1816
Chapter II 1817
Chapter III 1817
Chapter IV 1818
Chapter V 1818
Chapter VI 1818
Chapter VII 1818-19
Chapter VIII 1819
Chapter IX 1819
Chapter X 1819
Chapter XI 1820
Chapter XII 1820
Vol. V Contents.
Chapter I 1820
Chapter II 1820-21
Chapter III 1821
Chapter IV 1821
Chapter V 1821
Chapter VI 1821
Chapter VII 1822
Chapter VIII 1822
Chapter IX 1822-23
Chapter X 1823
Chapter XI 1823
Chapter XII 1824
Chapter XIII 1824-25
Vol. VI Contents.
Chapter I 1825
Chapter II 1825
Chapter III 1825
Chapter IV 1825
Chapter V 1826
Chapter VI 1826
Chapter VII 1826
Chapter VIII 1826
Chapter IX 1826
Chapter X 1826
Chapter XI 1826
Vol. VII Contents.
Vol VII Preface
Chapter I 1826-27
Chapter II 1827
Chapter III 1828
Chapter IV 1828
Chapter V 1829
Chapter VI 1830
Chapter VII 1830-31
Chapter VIII 1831
Chapter IX 1831
Chapter X 1831-32
Chapter XI 1832
Chapter XII
Vol VII Appendix
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“Edinburgh, Thursday, 10th December, 1812.
“My dear Morritt,

“I have just time to say that I have received your letters, and am delighted that Rokeby pleases the owner. As I hope the whole will be printed off before Christmas, it will scarce be worth while to send you the other sheets till it reaches you altogether. Your criticisms are the best proof of your kind attention to the poem. I need not say I will pay them every attention in the next edition. But some of the faults are so interwoven
DECEMBER, 1812.21
with the story that they must stand. Denzil, for instance, is essential to me, though, as you say, not very interesting; and I assure you that, generally speaking, the poeta loquitur has a bad effect in narrative; and when you have twenty things to tell, it is better to be slatternly than tedious. The fact is, that the tediousness of many really good poems arises from an attempt to support the same tone throughout, which often occasions periphrasis, and always stiffness. I am quite sensible that I have often carried the opposite custom too far; but I am apt to impute it partly to not being able to bring out my own ideas well, and partly to haste—not to error in the system. This would, however, lead to a long discussion, more fit for the fireside than for a letter. I need not say that, the poem being in fact your own, you are at perfect liberty to dispose of the sheets as you please. I am glad my geography is pretty correct. It is too late to enquire if Rokeby is insured, for I have burned it down in Canto V.; but I suspect you will bear me no greater grudge than at the noble Russian who burned Moscow. Glorious news to-day from the north—pereat iste!
Mrs Scott, Sophia, and Walter join in best compliments to Mrs Morritt; and I am, in great haste, ever faithfully yours,

Walter Scott.

“P.S.—I have heard of Lady Hood by a letter from herself. She is well, and in high spirits, and sends me a pretty topaz seal, with a talisman which secures this letter, and signifies (it seems), which one would scarce have expected from its appearance, my name.”